Anyone who knew Howie and Sarah knew that adversity only brought the couple closer together, made them more protective of each other and anyone else that would be affected. The twins being sick, Sarah clearly coming down with something, and Mr. Taylor’s declining mental state were clearly just such things to bring them closer. For the rest of the morning, Howie was ‘stuck’ to Sarah, his arm wrapped protectively around her or his hand holding hers, as they spent quiet time with Nick and Becca.
As Sarah dozed peacefully, Nick commented, his voice low so as not to disturb her, “She’s really pale, ‘D’.”
“I know. I’m worried about her,” answered Howie letting the long strands of her hair he’d been playing with slip through his fingers.
Becca reached over to take Howie’s hand. “You’re both going to be okay. Why don’t you get some rest too so you don’t get sick?”
“Thanks, Bec, but I’m okay.” Seeing Nick and Becca’s doubt, he smiled, “Really, I’m fine.”
“I called the others to come over this afternoon, to distract you and Sarah for a little while,” explained Becca. “Kevin was gonna bring a VCR/DVD player and some videos. Do you want me to call them back and tell them not to?”
“No, a distraction would be perfect. Thanks, Bec.”
Hesitantly, Becca asked, “Do you think her dad will visit today?”
Looking down at his wife, Howie answered, dread clearly in his voice. “I don’t know. Honestly, I hope not. I’m really not up for seeing the heartache in her eyes.”
“I can understand. Why don’t you go get something to eat at least? I’ll stay here with Sarah.”
“I am hungry,” conceded Howie.
“Come on, ‘D’. I’m hungry too so I’ll go with you,” offered Nick.
“When aren’t you hungry, Nicky?” teased Howie. Giving Sarah a kiss, Howie got up and started to follow Nick but stopped at the door. Looking back at Becca, he started to say, “Call….”
“Yes, Howie,” placated Becca rolling her eyes.
“Sorry, habit,” laughed Howie.
“SHOO!” hissed Becca waving them out of the room.
Becca laughed as Nick pulled Howie out of the room and turned back to Sarah. “They’re gone.”
“Thank you,” whispered Sarah weakly.
“How do you feel?”
“Like a truck hit me.”
“You DID just give birth to twins. I would imagine that’s to be expected.”
“This has nothing to do with giving birth. Bec, I’m scared.”
“I know, sweetie, but you trust Dr. Rowe and….”
“No, Becca, not the twins….me. I’m scared something’s wrong with me.”
“You? Dr. Johnson examined you this morning and you said he told you you were fine, just an elevated temp. Did he tell you something else while Howie was in the hall with us?” asked Becca as she sat on the edge of the bed taking Sarah’s hand in hers.
Silent tears rolled down Sarah’s cheeks and Becca reached for a tissue. Wiping them away, she spoke calmly, “Sarah, there’s nothing wrong other than your body settling down. For nine months, you’ve carried Caroline and Dwaine inside you and now your body is having to readjust. I’m sure if there was something seriously wrong, Dr. Johnson would have checked you out completely. The big question, is, why didn’t you want Howie to know you’re scared?”
“He’s worried enough about Caroline and DJ.”
“He’s worried about you too.”
“I know.” Sarah hesitated and then whispered, “Bec, what if I do have Lupus? What if the pregnancy triggered it? I don’t think Howie can handle it.”
“If you do have it, then you two will face it together. He’s NOT going to let you do it alone and neither am I but you don’t need to worry about it.”
“But it’s in the family.”
“Howie’s, not yours,” pointed out Becca. “Now stop worrying about this. You’re going to make yourself sick.”
The opening of the door startled Sarah and she quickly dashed away her tears for fear it was Howie and he’d see she’d been crying.
“WOW! Mark it on the calendar! Howie actually left you alone,” teased Sheena.
Sarah laughed as Becca said, “I promise, he hasn’t gone far.”
“Is he with Caroline and Dwaine?”
“No, he’s gone to get something to eat,” answered Sarah.
“So, want to tell me what’s got you upset?”
“Worry wart here seems to think her fever, aches, and pains mean something’s wrong with her,” explained Becca.
Sheena shook her head, “You just gave birth, Sarah, to twins.”
“I tried to tell her that,” said Becca giving Sarah an ‘I told you so’ look.
“I didn’t feel like this after Jesse.”
“You took something for the pain too. Dr. Johnson is here delivering a baby. Let me talk to him and get him to prescribe a mild pain killer. You’ll feel better and be able to sleep.”
“I don’t know,” said Sarah doubtfully.
“I do! You need to do this,” insisted Becca. “Right now, you’re being as stubborn and hard-headed as I was over the press issue. You’re not that girl Russell tortured and you’ve got TOO MANY people looking out for you. Now, in your words, stop being such a chicken shit and take the pain medicine.”
“I think you’d better listen to her. Sounds like she just might turn you over her knee and spank you.”
Sarah squeezed Becca’s hand. “Yeah, ever since she became a ‘mom’, she thinks she’s everyone’s mom. Okay, I’ll take something for the pain.”
Patting Sarah’s knee, Sheena said, “Back in a few minutes.”
While Sheena was gone, Becca and Sarah talked quietly. In no time at all, Sheena returned with the pain medicine. It was just what Sarah needed and before Howie and Nick returned, she was starting to feel better.
Chapter 69 Index